ROY, Utah (KTVX) — Police in Utah released body camera video Thursday of a shootout that left a man dead and a police dog wounded, and it started with a partially obscured license plate.
At 1:58 a.m. on Aug. 8, a Roy police officer pulled over a Gray Volkswagen Passat. Inside was driver Aaron Griffin, 21, of Plain City, Utah, and his passenger, 49-year-old Brian Cregg, of Ogden, Utah.
In the video, the officer can be heard asking, “Why do you got paper covering up your license plate?”
“I was playing a joke on my sister, so I covered it up and I just didn’t take it off,” Griffin replied.
Cregg, who had a warrant for violating parole, gave the officer a fake name, Bryan James.
The officer let the pair go with a warning but couldn’t find any record of Bryan James and pulled them over again minutes later to get more information. This time, after a brief exchange, Griffin sped off, eventually pulling into a field, where his car got stuck on a pipe.
Another officer and his K-9, Mik, arrived within seconds, and Griffin ran.
“Stop! I will send the dog. He will bite you! He will bite you. Stop!” the officer yells. Griffin fires a handgun at them, wounding Mik in the face, and the officer then fires at Griffin six times.
“Start medical. My dog has been shot,” the officer is heard saying. “Good boy. Come here. It’s OK. Good boy.” Then he says, “I’m good. My dog’s shot.”
As he tends to Mik, three more officers with the Roy Police Department race into the field, where Griffin fires at them. One officer hit him with his vehicle, then the three officers got out to look for Griffin.
“The officers found Aaron, and as they started ordering him to show his hands, he pointed his firearm at them,” Roy officer Joshua Taylor said. The officer fired numerous rounds at Griffin, who was hit multiple times and died at the scene.
The Davis County Attorney’s Office reviewed the case and ruled that the shooting was justified. Two police vehicles were struck by bullets, but no human officers were injured.
K-9 Mik underwent successful surgery for a bullet wound to his right cheek and stayed in a veterinary hospital for two days before he was sent home to recover.
On Thursday, a Roy officer said police hope to have him back on duty soon.